What Do You Do With Loss? by Angela Parlin

What Do You Do With Loss?

Everyone suffers loss. Maybe you have lost something important, or maybe knowing you will nags at you. The thing is, losses come in all shapes and sizes. Loss of a dream you planned your life around. Loss of someone you loved. Loss of a pet who was always by your side. Loss of physical function you used to have. Loss of your life the way you knew it. It doesn't matter the type of loss, it just hurts.

I've sufferred some losses lately. And even though I am blessed to have my husband, my children, my family, and others still beside me, the loss has ripped a piece of my heart out. I've been on my knees, throwing it at the feet of Jesus, feeling comforted in His great arms. And I've dropped to the floor, crushed by reality, my tears unstoppable.

Have you been there? At that place where grief takes over, your hope in Christ flickers in the background, the "here and now" reality sets in like a cloud, the darkness heavy on your shoulders. You ask Him with shaky voice, "What do I do with this?" And you grieve over your loss. You feel the pain with only a small ray of hope that you'll get up off this floor and feel good again, get past it, over it, or move on in spite of missing them.

It's lonely here, in the place where loss meets life, even if there are others showering you with hugs and prayers. Because the way you deal with the pain is different from every other person. The way it hits you is all your own, the pain is yours.

Except for the One who knows you inside and out. He will fill the empty places, the hole that feels raw and wide open in your heart. Only He can do that anyway. He's the only One who lasts forever. He is not fading away, the way our loved ones are, the way we are. And He loves you and longs to fill your emptiness.

Sometimes my tendency is to put hope in the people around me. I can see them. They make me feel known and loved and good. They care for me and help me to feel less lonely. But still, I feel unsure. Because they are no more sure and certain than I am. As David said in Psalm 39, Everyone's life is but a breath.

So my hope in them falls short. Their life, like mine, is fading. And then I choose to hope in the Lord. Trust in the Lord. Those words I memorized when I was five, they mean so much more now. I didn't understand. I said I trusted the Lord, but I didn't fully understand.

I used to think that trusting God was a one-time event. I placed my trust in Jesus Christ for my eternal salvation. But because life is full of difficult moments (trials, you might call them), I realize now that trust is something we do day after day. I can respond to my pain by trusting in all kinds of different things, or I can trust in the Lord.

It's often in moments of grief that I learn to trust Him. Trust that the God who made me loves me and has my life in His hands, my loved ones' lives in His hands. Trust that life is so much bigger and more important than me and the life I live on earth. Trust that God is good, and He is worthy of my focus and attention, day in and day out. Trust that even though all that is true, He cares for me.

He hears your cry and sees your pain and knows how it feels to you. Trust Him.

Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.
Psalm 62:8

About Angela Parlin:

Angela is a full-time Mama to three little people, Wife to hubby of 10 years, daughter, sister, friend, and follower of Jesus.

Visit her at www.angelaparlin.blogspot.com.

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